2012-10-04

Multicore Challenge and David May

I've recently visited the UWE for the first time to attend the Multicore Challenge 2012.

From left to right: Jonathan Mitchener (TSB), Said Azmoodeh (Imagination Technologies), Mike Bartley (TVS), Simon McIntosh (Bristol University), Jim Cownie (Intel), David May (XMOS).
Amongst other things, which can all be found on the official TVS webpage containing the slides, I've found extremely funny the description that Professor David May has given of the law that goes under his own name:

Software efficiency halves every 18 months, compensating Moore's Law.

which could be also written:

The amount of memory used by software doubles every 18 months, compensating Moore's Law.

This law was conceived for the software world, but now (given that the topic of the conference were multicore chips, and for May "multicore is not a challenge any more, but an opportunity") he's also provided an interesting corollary for the hardware world:

The number of cores used by software doubles every 18 months, compensating Moore's Law.

To find it funny you must be an engineer. Personally I find both the versions extremely amusing (because they are true...).

Another interesting thing that he said is that all the patents related to the Inmos Transputer expired last year - so it would be possible for instance to create an open-source clone and publish it on something like www.opentransputer.org.... Not that I could be personally interested in doing this: the Transputer had a Stack Machine Instruction Set, something that I can't say I appreciate that much (especially in AD 2012...).

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